Even a glorious autumnal morning where the beams of sun split the ramparts of Stirling Castle cannot quite compete in the tanning stakes with the coastal charms of seemingly-always temperate California. Yet home terrain is where Luke Traynor has affirmably chosen to be, opting to make his base back in Scotland for the prime of his running career and leaving the Pacific Rim behind for the environs of Glasgow.

Back to basics too, as the 25-year-old plots his scheduled marathon debut in 2019. The build-up will be overseen by Robert Hawkins, paterfamilias of the clan that brought Callum and Derek to an Olympic Games. Their fellow Great Britain internationalist once felt an emigration to the United States, initially to university in Tulsa, was a means to put his best foot forward. No longer, Traynor believes, is that the route readily required.

“I’ve always trained well in Glasgow and performed well,” he declares. “There was the option to be based in the States or down in England. But what would the point of that be? You have all the different terrains and surfaces in Glasgow. All the facilities. Great coaches. I didn’t see the need to be away.

“You can fly out to altitude or warm weather camps but I didn’t see the need to be somewhere else. I’ve seen how much Laura Muir and Callum progressed. He was away for a year or two but they’ve done most of their thing as Glasgow-based and they’ve killed that theory that you need to be somewhere more glamorous to succeed.”

The wholesome mud, thrills and spills of the Scottish cross-country season fits snugly into his plan. Officially launched yesterday, the Great Stirling XCountry on January 12 – plus the national inter-districts – will be incorporated into the domestic calendar following the event’s abandonment by Edinburgh following a 13-year residency in Holyrood Park.

That some eschew the terrain is baffling, Traynor says. This winter’s world and Euro cross championships offer valuable medals, but also opportunities for self-improvement.

“It just proves the theory, when you see folk like Laura Muir going so far on the track, or Callum Hawkins going so far on the roads, that just suggests that doing some kind of cross-country season is hugely important if you want to excel in the summer. It’s strengthening as well. It sets you up for performing over two to three months on the track or for the marathon.”

Before then, Traynor, who was third in the recent Great Scottish Run in Glasgow, will return to half-marathon duty in Manchester on Sunday ahead of a possible pacemaking role at the Frankfurt Marathon. The German showpiece, he confirmed, has been pencilled in for his 26-mile bow if the next 12 months under Hawkins Sr go to plan.

“And if I do it, I will practice everything involved: taking on water, pacing myself, all the things I’d do in the first half of a race next year. And I’ll be out in Frankfurt a few times before the race to go over it so I can get it all right.”